China's largest offshore project comes online

CHINA: Longyuan Power last week connected 99.3MW to the grid in a pilot inter-tidal wind farm in Rudong, Jiangsu province. Added to the 32MW already online since September, this makes Rudong the largest offshore wind farm in the country

Longyuan, which is China's largest wind power developer, began building the Rudong project in June 2009. Its first stage — 150MW at a cost of CHY 2.5 billion ($397 million) — is due for completion in March, according to Zhang Gang, general manager of Longyuan Jiangsu Offshore Wind Power. Zhang said the wind farm would generate 330 gigawatt hours of electricity for the grid, avoiding up to 267,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions.

The project is a significant for the nation, according to Xie Changjun, general manager of Longyuan: "Our construction of the Rudong pilot intertidal wind farm will lead the way for China to develop offshore wind power, particularly in site selection, planning and design, and installation and maintenance." China would soon be able to develop offshore wind power on a large scale, he added.

China's only other offshore wind farm in commercial operation is the 102MW Shanghai East Sea Bridge project. It began operating in June 2010.

According to the National Energy Bureau, China will construct 5GW of offshore wind projects by 2015, representing 5% of its total wind installed capacity. The country aims to have 30GW of offshore wind by 2020.

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